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Focusrite interface advice

Discussion in 'Recording' started by youshouldneverthrowacat, Jan 19, 2010.

  1. Hi

    Just about to purchase my first recording interface and was comparing:
    Focusrite Saffire:
    ultra-low latency FireWire 400 interface with on-board DSP, 4x inputs (2x Focusrite pre-amps and 2-channel S/PDIF), 10x outputs (8x balanced analog and 2-channel S/PDIF), 2x headphone outputs. 24bit/192kHz A-D/D-A converter, MIDI I/O, Saffire DSP powered plug-ins (compression, amp-modelling and reverb etc).

    Focusrite Saffire Pro 24

    FireWire audio interface, (24bit/96kHz), total I/O count of 16x inputs (including internal loopback) and 8x outputs, new FireWire chipset/DSP hardware, 2x mic preamps, 4x analog inputs (2x combo mic/line/inst & 2x line inputs), ADAT input (optical), 1x S/PDIF I/O (coaxial), headphone output, MIDI in/out, 1x FireWire connection, switchable 48V phantom power, LED meter, Saffire Mix Control zero-latency DSP mixer/router.

    (info and comparison chart @ Thomann.de -(Dead Link Removed)

    This is for a small recording setup, acoustic wind/string instruments primarily. Running on 2.66GHz quadcore, 4Gb RAM with Windows XP or Vista.

    I really can't find any advice on which of these to get.
    From what I can see
    Saffire - onboard DSP, max sample rate 192kHz
    Pro 24 - More inputs, ADAT input

    I would really appreciate any advice on this as this is my first interface and so I have no knowledge on what i might regret not having in a few months.

    There is also an onboard DSP version of Pro 24 which is included in the comparison chart link. I would prefer to not incur the extra cost though as I'm buying Reason & Record at the same time so need to mind the money

    Alternatively, if anyone has a recommendation for an interface (preferably FireWire) for less than €300 (~$425), I'd be happy to listen!
  2. fmoralesf

    fmoralesf Guest


    Out of those two options, I think the Saffire Pro 24 would be the best way to go. Actually they have the same amount of inputs, but I think the ability to expand through ADAT is more important than the extra sample rate (CD sample rate is only 44.1k anyway), or the onboard dsp. If you can spare an extra $200 dollars (or 145 euros?), I would go with the Saffire PRO 40. That way you're not limiting yourself if you decide you want to use more than 2 mics at once, You can't go wrong with 6 more preamps! and just like the Pro 24, it has ADAT so you can always expand.

    And speaking of Focusrite, am I missing something here or is the new Oktopre mkII just a knocked down version of the Saffire PRO 40 that costs the same?
  3. ouzo77

    ouzo77 Active Member

    what about the saffire pro 24 dsp. it's basically the same as the pro 24 but with a dsp chip and two headphone outputs. the dsp effects (compressor, equalizer, reverb) aren't the best, but for zero-latency tracking they are really useful. you can record without any processing, but you can apply compression, eq and reverb to the signal for better monitoring while recording vocals.
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The DSP effects can only be utilized while recording-not as plugs. Or so I understand it. When recording one normally doesn't use FX as it makes the recorded track less versatile. That's not a universal feeling necessarily but just in the FWIW category.
  5. ouzo77

    ouzo77 Active Member

    you can monitor with the dsp effects without latency and record the pure signal. you can also record the processed signal. you can also record the processed and the pure signal on 2 seperate tracks. the interface has powerful routing options, but you will need some time to understand the signal flow, cause it's a bit tricky.
    btw, the saffire comes with the effects as plugins too, but they don't use the dsp because they're native vst/au plugs.
  6. daveanthony

    daveanthony Active Member

    Saffire 24 DSP

    Yeah you are correct, you can record either the processed signal or the clean signal but use the processed signal for monitoring, which is great for vocalists. I don't know any singer who wants to hear themselves totally dry! You can also use the effects as plugin's if you were so inclined. The unit sounds excellent though, the preamps are very clean and sound great IMO.
  7. daveanthony

    daveanthony Active Member

    Not true, they can be used as plugin's.

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